A chance meeting at a legislative hearing changed Wade Kach's heart and mind, forever.
Kach, a Maryland Republican Delegate, initially opposed the state's proposed gay marriage law, but changed his mind after being seated next to a gay couple at an event and helped pass the legislation through the state's General Assembly, 72-67.
The magic number needed for passage was 71.
Kach, one of two Republicans who voted in favor of the bill, reportedly had a change of heart after receiving calls from several GOP operatives, including former Republican National Committee Chairman Ken Mehlman, New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg and former Vice President Dick Cheney.
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Kach called Cheney "a great man," but insisted his mind was truly changed after hearing same-sex couples testify regarding their devotion to one another.
According to the L.A. Times, Kach found himself standing next to gay couples who were looking to testify at a hearing on the subject of same-sex matrimony.
"In an effort to get the bill to the House floor," the Times writes. "A special joint committee was formed and legislators were left scrambling for seats. Kach... found a space right next to the witness table."
"I saw with so many of the gay couples, they were so devoted to another. I saw so much love. When this hearing was over, I was a changed person in regard to this issue. I felt that I understood what same sex couples were looking for."
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Gov. Martin O'Malley has promised to sign the bill soon.